Watch for trigger warning later in the chapter.

To be honest, I didn't absolutely hate waking up early in the mornings.

It's just what I have to wake up for that I hate.

I pushed the covers off me, not willing to completely commit to waking up. This was definitely the hardest part of my day. The part when I can't stop all the "what-if's" about today running around my head. What if I made a fool of myself? What if I got laughed at? What if Theo didn't want to be my friend anymore? What if people started asking questions? What if people saw the cuts?

I shook my thoughts away, though they never truly left, and swung my feet out of bed. I cursed myself as I remembered my decision to wash my hoodie yesterday. I would have to make do without it. I made my way to my wardrobe, pulling on a pair of sweatpants just to curse myself more. I had no long armed shirts.

The temptation to suddenly scream grew. I settled for hitting my head on the wall instead.

What was I supposed to do? I couldn't go to school with my arms on full display. I could feign sickness, but dad always knew when I was lying. I could skip school, but I had never done that before, and I was far too scared to have a new experience today.

I racked my brain to come up with a solution, but nothing came. I could feel tears of frustration prick the back of my eyes. For the first time in my life, I wished that I hadn't refused my dad's offer to let me shop for new clothes. I could really use another jacket right now.

I looked down at my wrists in defeat. I either found another solution within ten minutes, or I was going to have to go uncovered. Which was never going to happen. Not in a million years.

A thought suddenly popped into my head. I could steal one of my dad's jackets. Sure, it would be big on me, but I would rather that than face the questions and looks I'd get.

I crept out of my room and down the hall to where my dad's room was. I prayed he had fallen asleep in his study so I could go in and out without any fuss. The heaven's must have heard my prayer, because as I looked inside, the bed lay empty. I quickly trotted over to his wardrobe and picked out the first casual looking jacket I saw.

It was huge on me, but I was still grateful for the cover it gave me. Forgetting about breakfast altogether, I ran outside to my car and made my way to school with five minutes left till class.

As I pulled into the car park, I saw a familiar figure loom around the entrance of the school. The bell had just rung, so everyone had already made their way inside. I realised the figure was none other than Theo, who waved at me as I got out of the car. As I got closer he eyed my jumper looking slightly confused. When his eyes met mine again I shrugged my shoulders.

"M-My hoodie was i-in the wash so I b-borrowed one of my d-dad's," I said. It wasn't a complete lie, so I didn't have to feel bad, but the queesy feeling in my stomach still grew as his brow creased in confusion.
"But it's hot today..." He trailed off. His expression grew slightly worried and the pit in my stomach grew. I gave him a smile that felt slightly shaky.

"Guess it was c-cold when I go-ot out of bed," I dismissed the conversation, walking into the school. Theo followed me a second later.

When I turned to him again, the worried expression was gone. In it's place was a small smirk as his hot gaze poured over me.
"So," He said, amusement filling his eyes, "You ready to get detention for tardiness?" I stopped in my tracks and blew out a breath of frustration. I glared up at Theo, which was quite a stretch for my poor neck, but my pride managed it.

"I h-hate you," I grumbled, though I would have been late whether or not I had stopped to talk to him.
"Don't worry," He said, "You get to spend it with me."

By the time we had gotten our books, the bell rang for our first class. I started to make my way to my art class before realising Theo was following me.
"T-theo," I looked at him, puzzled, "W-what are you d-doing?" Theo shrugged as he smiled at me, making my knees go weak. "Theo."

He groaned slightly before mumbling an answer. "I changed my schedule to match yours," He muttered. My eyes grew wide.
"W-what?" I stuttered.
"I changed my-" He said louder but I cut him off.

"I k-know what y-you said-d," I stumbled, "B-but w-w-w." I breathed in through my nose refusing to get annoyed by my stupid stutter. "Why?" I asked clearer. Theo shrugged his shoulders.
"After what happened yesterday..." His voice trailed off, "I thought it would be best if I could be there for you whenever and wherever you need me." My insides suddenly turned mushy as I understood his meaning.

I smiled softly.
"T-thank you," I whispered. He shrugged again.
"For you?" He said, "Anything."

I was eternally grateful for Theo taking care of me. Unlike a lot of people who claimed to be "depressed" but wanted no help, I knew I was better off under his watchful gaze.

I smiled slightly as we made our way to lunch. Theo was back to being unemotional as we passed through the hallways, but I didn't mind. It was nice to think I was one of the only people who got to see him smile. I savoured it while I still could.

My smile instantely fell. I didn't want to think about the undeniable future when he would stop being my friend. In a way I wish I had never met him, so I don't have to suffer the loss of him. But then again, I can't imagine not meeting him. He was quickly becoming my first real friend, and I never wanted to lose that.

It must have been a funny sight. The both of us, frowning, stuck in thought in our own little words as we walked outside. As soon as we passed through the doors, Theo's posture relaxed, though his frown stayed as he grumbled.
"I hate school," He mumbled. Me too, Theo. Me too.

"W-why would you hate s-school?" I asked. Theo raised his eyebrow at me.
"It's the one place in this world where I can't act normal for fear of people judging me, but I can't not act normal for fear of people judging me," He explained, "It's stupid."

"S-so you just d-don't act at-at all?" I questioned. He nodded in response.
We stayed quiet for a while, sitting down on a bench near the car park.

"Except with you," Theo stated suddenly. I gave him a confused look. A small smile lit his face like a candle. "You don't judge me," He shrugged. I couldn't tear my eyes away from those eyes of his.

I smiled back at him in a slight daze. I don't know if he saw the awestruck expression on my face, or if he was just polite enough not to mention it, but I quickly shook it off in embarrassment. Theo's brow slowly creased as his eyes travelled up to meet mine.

"Why aren't you eating anything?" He asked softly. I stiffened a bit before letting out an awkward chuckle.
"I-I had a pretty b-big breakfast," I lied quickly, "N-not really h-hungry." I quickly diverted my eyes to my lap, fearing I'd blurt out the truth if I kept eye contact with him. A heavy silence fell over us, and I knew he didn't believe me. I picked at the chipped nailpolish left on my nails after a night spent in boredom, just praying he'd let the issue drop.

We didn't say anything for the rest of the lunch. He was angry at me, I could feel it. This is it. He's found something he doesn't like, something that's wrong with me, now he's going to leave. Why does this always happen? I tucked my hands in my dad's jacket as I turned away from Theo to go to my locker.

For the first time in my life, I didn't feel like going to class. Not because of a panic attack, or feeling sick about the thought of it, I just didn't want to. I didn't have the energy to walk, let alone pay attention in class. Not giving myself a chance to have second thoughts, I packed my book bag and walked in the direction of the school entry. Missing two classes couldn't be that bad.

I made my way to the car, breathing a sigh of relief once I was safely inside. I pulled out of the parking lot and began the drive home. It was calming, in a depressing sort of way, to be along with my thoughts. At a red light I ripped off my dad's jacket, relishing the cool air that hit my skin. I made sure not to look at my arms as I drove, I didn't want to panic at the sight of the red lines.

Trigger Warning - Don't read on if this disturbs you

I finally made it home and I quietly made my way inside and up the stairs to my room. I glanced at the bathroom connected to my room and felt the familiar pressure in my chest and stomach. Nothing in me had the energy to resist as I slowly made my way inside. I opened up the overhead cabinet feeling for the familiar contours of my razor. Every inch of me knew it was a bad idea, but every inch of me wanted it at the same time.

I placed the edge of the razor the my wrist and pressed down, pulling it along my skin. With the distraction of the pain it caused, my thoughts finally started to quieten as I repeated the movement over and over again until I couldn't concentrate on anything anymore.

Trigger Warning Ends - Read on

I flopped onto my bed, exhausted. I didn't want to do anything, mostly because I felt that if I did, I would fall off the emotional edge I was currently balancing on. My whole body felt like it would explode if I moved a muscle, so I didn't. I stayed in the same position, my wrist throbbing, until the light from outside started turning dark.

Eventually I must have fallen asleep, because the next thing I knew, it was the next afternoon. I was curled up in the centre of my bed, most likely my body's way of trying to conserve a little heat. I turned my head to look at the digital clock on my nightstand. Instead of panicking like I usually would have I simply sighed when I saw the time read 5:46. School had ended over two hours ago. My phone buzzed from my desk where I had left it yesterday. I let it it buzz a few more times before my familiar ringtone filled the empty silence in the room.

I groaned in annoyance and sleepily got up to answer the call. I didn't say hello, simply put the phone to my ear and threw myself back onto the bed.
"Winnie?" A familiar voice my mind finally placed as Roxy filled my ears, and I decided to answer back.
"H-How'd you g-get my number," My throat was hoarse and I sounded slightly like a dying whale, but I don't think she noticed. I heard a sigh of relief from the other side.
"God almighty," She practically shouted through the phone, "Don't you ever scare me like that again! I thought you had died or something!" My brow creased in confusion.

"What d-do you m-mean?" I asked, "And y-you still haven't answered m-my q-question." Roxy grunted at me in what I thought was annoyance.
"I got your number of Theo," Her voice grew slightly teasing at his name, "And I'm worrying my ass off because he said you didn't like missing out on school, even when you were sick, so of course when you leave half way through yesterday and don't show up for school this morning, and then don't answer your phone all day, we both started panicking thinking you had been kidnapped or something had happen-" I cut off her ranting.
"I'm s-sorry," I sighed, "I just... I d-don't have t-the energy right n-now."

"Well you better find some energy because Theo's on his way," She stated. I shot up in shock.
"W-what do you m-mean he's o-on his way?" I squealed in panic, "How d-does he even k-know where I l-live?" I rushed to my window, looking outside to see if his car was coming down the street yet.
"Yeah," She said, "I asked the same thing, he just said he had his ways."

I growled in frustration. I didn't want him to be around right now, I wanted to sulk for the rest of the day.
"When d-did he leave," I kept my eyes on the road outside, anxiously waiting for his car to come into sight.
"Uhh, well he left about five minutes ago so..." She trailed off just as his familiar black ute pulled into my street.
"No," I whined. I heard an amused snort from the other end of the line and glared at approaching car.

"Y-you're evil," I stated at her.
"Meh," She responded before I heard a click and the line went dead. The ute pulled into my driveway and I quickly jumped back from the window, hoping he hadn't seen me. I heard the car door slam shut before rushed footsteps made their way up the porch steps. A harsh knocking came from the front door and I reluctantly pulled myself downstairs, but not before grabbing my freshly cleaned hoodie from my pile of fresh clothes.

I didn't open the door, just stood next to it, listening to Theo's sharp breaths.
"Winnie?" His shaky voice was muffled through the locked door. I sighed and slowly started to answer him.
"Y-yeah," I responded quietly.
"Are you okay?" He questioned. I nodded before remembering he couldn't see me.
"Yeah, f-fine," I said stiffly, "G-go back home T-Theo." He didn't move and I strained to hear his breathing through the thick wood.
"Can I come in first?" His response finally filtered through the air. I rubbed the sleep from my eyes and held my head in my hands.

"N-No Theo," I stated a little harshly before softening my voice, "I j-just need to be al-lone for a li-little, okay? I'll b-be fine." I thought he would leave after that, but Theo didn't budge.
"I don't believe you," He said softly. I cursed his observant nature and groaned in annoyance before slowly twisting the lock that held the door shut. Theo was quick to act and pulled open the door and gathering me in his arms.

I felt like a tiny rag doll as he squeezed the life out of me. I patted his back, my breathing spluttering slightly.
"T-Theo," I wheezed, "You're cru-crushing me." He let me go as soon as the words were out of my mouth. His eyes were quick to scan over me for any sort of injury and I thanked my past self for throwing on my hoodie before I came downstairs. I ignored his heated gaze as best I could and made my way back upstairs to my room. I felt light headed and in need of my bed.

I faceplanted into my pillows, my legs draped over the edge of the bed. I heard Theo enter the room after me. I shifted my head slightly so I could see him; he was walking around the room, taking in the many photos and drawings I had proudly stuck up on my walls. A small smile lit his face when he saw a picture of me, my dad and my mother smiling together. My mother's hands were placed protectively around her quickly growing stomach. It was taken a week before she died.

Theo turned around to the other side of the room, his smile growing.
"I didn't know you played guitar," He said, walking to the hidden guitar case I hadn't touched in months.
"Used to-to," I said, but I'm sure he couldn't understand me as my face was squashed by my favourite pillow. I lifted the top half of my body, leaning on my elbows as I stared at him taking my guitar out of it's coffin.

"Play for me?" He asked, his gorgeous brown eyes pleading. I sighed, turning over and lying on my back.
"I ha-haven't played in age-es," I said, "I d-don't really remem-ember." In truth, music was something I'll never forget how to do. But as I got older, I had less time for it and I lost my motivation to play.

Theo sat next to me, placing the guitar across my lap.
"I'm sure you'll remember once you start playing again," He smiled at me. I'd be lying if I said that smile didn't tempt me to just do everything he asked. I huffed before sitting up.
"B-be warned," I tried to smile back at him, "I m-may kill your ear-rs." Theo chuckled slightly before crossing his legs and leaning forward on his hands.

I rearranged the guitar in my lap, my fingers instinctively strumming the strings. I thought about what to play, until the one song I know I'll never forget floated in my head. Before my mother died, she would sing to me every night, specifically 'Can't help falling in love'. It had been my mother's favourite song, and her way of never letting me forget how much she loved me.

I took a deep breath and settled my fingers to play the first chord. The guitar was easy in this song, I wasn't nervous about that, I was nervous, because I would have to sing. Singing would be bearing a part of my soul to Theo, and I didn't know if I was prepared for that. But he was my friend. I shouldn't be afraid of this. Plus, singing would mean I wouldn't stutter, which is always a good thing.

I started plucking the strings, faulting a few times, but once I finally got my bearings, I started to sing.

Wise men say,

Theo's eyes widened at the sound of my voice, and instead of getting nervous, it just made me sing louder.

Only fools rush in
But I can't help falling in love with you

I concentrated on the guitar and the ground, not willing to look him in the eye. There was an electricity in the air that I had never experienced in my life.

Shall I stay?
Would it be a sin
If I can't help falling in love with you?

I closed my eyes, not bothered by Theo's gaze, or the tension. I let my voice wash me away and I loved every second of it. Why had I ever stopped playing?

Like a river flows
Surely to the sea
Darling, so it goes
Some things are meant to be
Take my hand,
Take my whole life, too
For I can't help falling in love with you

Like a river flows
Surely to the sea
Darling, so it goes
Some things are meant to be
Take my hand,
Take my whole life, too
For I can't help falling in love with you
For I can't help falling in love with you